Jeff Slate “The Last Day of Summer” Album out now

Limited edition digi pack CD.

The NYC-based rock musician has recruited a who’s who of famed rock musician friends for this effort, including Dave Stewart, Earl Slick, Duff McKagan, and members of Paul Weller’s band and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds.

(The Last Day of Summer) Album Story

It all began with “Heartbreak.”

During early days of the pandemic, with not much else to do, I began to write. The first song that came was “Heartbreak.” I was excited. I knew I had something special. I’d been chatting – as we all were – via text and FaceTime and (eventually) Zoom, with friends around the globe. My pal Ben Gordelier, Paul Weller’s drummer, was excited by the simple demo I’d recorded, and offered to add some drums. It brought the track to life. I’d already enlisted Eric Lichter to be the producer on whatever my next project might be, so he was on board. As was my ever-present musical compadre Earl Slick. “I heard it once, and I knew exactly what you wanted, and what it needed,” he told me. Jordan Summers, my keyboardist pal, based out in LA, did his thing, and Lee Harris, the guitarist from Nick Mason’s band, waiting out the pandemic in rural France, added some delicate flourishes, courtesy of the lap steel he’d bought from Walter Becker’s estate, and the track was just about finished. But it needed bass. Who to call? Why, Duff McKagan, of course. Would a guy from Guns N’ Roses – albeit with a punk rock heart – know what to do with a Time Out Of Mind-esque ballad? It was a stupid question, really. Duff’s part was perfection.

By now it was October 2020, and while we’d been piecing “Heartbreak” together long distance, I’d been writing furiously.

Ben cut more drum parts, as did Jeremy Stacey, the incredible drummer most closely associated with Noel Gallagher’s solo recordings, and I enlisted former-Heartbreaker Ron Blair, the Boogie Wonder band’s Boogie Cindy and Joan Chew from Lez Zeppelin, to add some bass. During the first break in the pandemic lockdown, after the first round of vaccinations, Slick and Eric and I put some meat on the bones of the songs they’d all sent back during sessions at Eric’s rural Dirt Floor Recording studio, and Jordan, Jody Bagley and keyboard legend Mick Talbot all worked their magic to the tracks that were finally coming into focus.

That’s when the excitement really kicked in for me. It was clear that this was a special batch of songs, and that everybody, with nothing much else to do, had given them their all. It was exciting and stimulating, and corralling the last batch of contributions became a pure joy.

Steve Cradock – Weller’s right hand man for more than two decades – added some gorgeous piano to “Till New York City Dies” and 6- and 12-string acoustics to “The Poacher,” while Jess Greenfield from Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds (and now Wonder 45) arranged some gorgeous harmonies on the soul-y version of “Movin’ On.” Todd Morse, from the Offspring, filled out the backing vocals that Eric and I had cut, and multi-instrumentalist Don Miguel did for me what he had done when producing Leonard Cohen’s last two records, adding some final, ethereal adornments to a few of the tracks, one of which already included parts by Gene Parsons of the Byrds and Steve Holley from Wings. Finally, during sessions at Mark Plati’s studio in the East Village, where he had worked with David Bowie back in the 90s and 00s, Shannon Conley, from my live band, laid down some beautiful harmonies, and even a bit of harmonica, and Mark and I did some final vocals, guitar and backing vocals.

The Last Day of Summer – as it had been called since almost the very start of the sessions – was nearly complete, save for three people without whom it would not be the record it eventually became.

Ace mix master Duane Lundy worked tirelessly to help me realize my vision, adding sonic elegance without ever compromising those all-important rough edges, and Justin Perkins mastered the shit out the tracks.

But it was Dave Stewart’s 11th hour touch, on his version of “(Broken) Without You,” that brought the proceedings to a close on the highest of high notes. I’d played the song during the making of the album (at the time called, simply, “Folk”) to anyone who would listen – Slick, Paul Weller, Steve Cradock, especially – insistent that I was missing the mark, even if just barely. Then, like the mysterious, sitar-strumming caterpillar he played in the Tom Petty video, along came Dave. “What are you working on?” he asked. “Would you like me to take a crack?” Working from his studio “on a small island in the Atlantic,” Dave’s ghostly guitar flourishes and his gorgeous mix were the icing on the cake.

And so, after nearly three years, The Last Day of Summer was complete. I’ve made lots of albums during my years as a musician and songwriter, but for some reason, this one feels like the first. Like my old band The Badge’s debut, it feels like a manifesto of sorts; as though everything I’ve ever wanted to say in a batch of songs is there. All artists rank their latest work as their favorite, but this record means so much to me, I can’t imagine it could ever be less than most special – most life affirming – experience I’ve ever had in taking a bunch of loose, random ideas from the dark recesses of my mind, to my weird little notebook with the Chinese characters on the front, to the demos and sessions that, due to the pandemic lockdown, seemed to stretch on forever, and, finally, to the lovingly realized disc you now hold in your hand. And, to finally top the product off: Bob Gruen photographed the cover!


I’m a lucky guy. Enjoy. (Jeff Slate)

Jeff Slate 


Jeff Slate is known as a world-class frontman and songwriter on the New York City music scene, where his band’s monthly residency in the heart of Chelsea draws sellout crowds and famous guests. But it was a long and winding road to that coveted place as part of New York’s cultural firmament.

Slate came up in the mid-1980s US East Coast post-punk scene, playing CBGBs and other legendary clubs of the day as the singer, guitarist and principal songwriter of the Mindless Thinkers, named by Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols at a drunken aftershow party. By the early 90s, Slate was a solo artist, and made his name after working with The Who’s Pete Townshend, touring with Sheryl Crow and founding the mod-influenced band The Badge. Taking a page from the likes of the Kinks, The Who and the Small Faces, The Badge released three albums of original material, as well as numerous singles, EPs and live releases, before going on hiatus at the end of the 00s.

Since then, Slate’s solo releases have included famous friends and A-list session players, and his songs have appeared in advertising and films, and on television, including in the hit show Gossip Girl. Slate has toured throughout the US over the past 13 years, sharing the stage with Roger McGuinn, Jeff Tweedy, Willie Nile and Margo Price and Sheryl Crow, and headlining the Switchyard Festival at Tulsa’s legendary Cain’s Ballroom and Tom Petty Weekend in the late artist’s hometown of Gainesville, Florida. He’s even been an all-star counselor at the celebrated Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp!

A regular guest host on SiriusXM, Slate is the co-author of the 2017 book The Authorized Roy Orbison, with the late-legend’s sons, and has written liner notes for albums by Orbison, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix, among many others. Last year, Slate interviewed Bob Dylan, one of only a handful the icon has given this century.

Jeff’s fourth solo album, The Last Day of Summer, featuring Dave Stewart, Duff McKagan, Earl Slick and members of Paul Weller’s band and Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, is out now.


Check out the Schnitzel Spotify playlist including: David Bowie, Robert Smith, Lee Scratch Perry, Earl Slick, The Dean Ween Group, Vapors of Morphine, Nick Oliveri, Mark Lanegan, Alain Johannes, Dean Fertita, Jeff Slate, Steve Cradock, Paul Weller and many more…

Jeff Slate – The Poacher


NEW YORK CITY: New York City musician Jeff Slate has announced the release of a new single, a cover of Small Faces and Faces legend Ronnie Lane’s “The Poacher,” to be released April 1st worldwide.

Produced by Eric Lichter and Slate, “The Poacher” is a taste from Slate’s forthcoming solo album, The Last Day of Summer. “The Poacher” was recorded in sessions spanning the globe during the pandemic lockdown and features an all-star cast of music veterans.

Featuring Earl Slick (David Bowie, John Lennon) and Steve Cradock (Ocean Colour Scene, Paul Weller) joining Slate on guitars, and a crack all-star band – Joan Chew (Lez Zeppelin) on bass and strings, Adan Ippolito (John Lennon’s Plastic Ono Elephants Memory Band) on piano and Hammond organ, co-producer Eric Lichter on backing vocals and Paul Weller’s drummer Ben Gordelier – the release of “The Poacher” marks what would have been Ronnie Lane’s 76th birthday with a full-throttle blast of old school mod-style rock and roll.

The track was mixed by the legendary Duane Lundy at the Lexington Recording Company and mastered by Justin Perkins at Mystery Room Mastering. The single’s arresting cover is by artist The Seasick Sailor.

“Ronnie Lane has been my hero for as long as I can remember, and this felt like the perfect way to honor his memory,” says Slate. “Everybody brought their absolute A-Game to the sessions, and that was inspiring and humbling, considering the players involved. We all dug deeper and reached higher on what feels like an exciting new direction.”

“I’ve worked with Jeff Slate for a long time, and I knew the song, so it was important to create something that wasn’t just a cover but was all him. So, you can hear the influences, but filtered through Jeff’s own distinct sensibility,” says the legendary guitarist Earl Slick of the track. “As soon as I heard the track I knew instinctively what to do. The song and the vibe were great – with amazing drumming, which is crucial – so it wasn’t me trying to fit myself into somebody else’s vision. And it sounds like a band, which is cool considering we were all over the world when we did our parts.”